As you may know, I’m getting married in New York next year. It’s been a lot of fun but also a little difficult (at times) planning a wedding in another country so I thought I’d put together my top tips for planning a wedding abroad. So far I’ve booked our photographer, officiant, wedding venue and restaurant and the florist so there’s very little left to plan!
Probably the most obvious tip, but it’s not always that easy, especially if it’s quite far away. I was lucky enough to go to New York at the beginning of 2016 to search for a restaurant, take a look at some hotels and visit our ceremony location. I’d highly recommend doing this if you can, although I know this might not always be possible but it definitely helped. I had a few restaurants to visit on my list and I hated a couple that I thought would be perfect so it definitely made the decision a lot easier.
Magazines & Websites
In the UK one of the most popular wedding websites is Rock My Wedding, but in the US they have The Knot. I picked up their magazine at the airport on the way back from New York and it was great as it had their annual awards inside and all of the winners which helped me decide on our florist and find other suppliers too. Try and pick up magazines for the country you’ll be getting married in or find wedding websites with local suppliers.
I have been on Instagram pretty much non-stop when planning our wedding. It helps so much because I search the hashtag #NYCWedding and it comes up with photographers, florists and real-life weddings so I’m able to see certain areas of New York to hold the ceremony and have our pictures taken. I’m hoping it’s not a rainy day so we can get married outside in Central Park but I am looking for alternatives locations, just in case!
This goes for planning any wedding really but it’s still important. When looking for a florist for our wedding day, I put together a PDF with photos and details of exactly what we were looking for to send to different suppliers. As I’m not able to go and visit anywhere to discuss ideas in person, I knew that was the best way of asking for exactly the same thing. I know that some suppliers will be better than others, but we had quotes ranging from £700 to £3,000 for the exact same thing which is crazy. One supplier wanted to charge us $7.50 for one sprig of eucalyptus PER plate! The supplier I’ve chosen is great, I follow them on Instagram so constantly see how good their work is and they’re charging just $1 per plate! I am quite fussy too so I’m not just going for the cheap option – I work in the wedding industry so I can spot the good suppliers from the bad and know when people are overcharging purely because it’s a wedding.
I didn’t really have much of an idea about how to get a marriage license or where we could officially get married in New York when we started looking so Google was a huge help. There are loads of blog posts about “eloping” and getting married in New York City, including how to get your marriage license and where you have to go. There’s also lots of helpful information on getting a permit for your wedding location which isn’t necessary but it’s something we’ll definitely be getting so our location is free for the time of our ceremony.
Are you planning your wedding abroad? What have you found helpful?